Brunei Definitive Issues
from the 1908 Set

Watermarked Multiple Crown CA
Updated - March, 2018

Brunei was a British Protectorate beginning in 1888. Stamps from Labaun and local issues were used until the Post Office opened in 1906. Initially overprinted Labaun stamps were sold, until the first stamps printed for Brunei were issued in 1907. The design of a native scene was used in varying forms for definitive issues until 1952 when it was replaced with an image of the Sultan. Identifying the Brunei issues is primarily a matter of determining the difference in the watermark, the difference between single and double plate printing dies, and the various color shades which resulted as the stamps were reprinted during the course of the set's production.

The set changed beginning in 1908 to incorporate the UPU and British Postal color system. All of the stamps were printed on paper watermarked Multiple Crown CA. The stamps were replaced with issues on paper watermarked Multiple Script CA beginning in 1924.

The 1c and 3c issues were initially printed using a double plate. This was replaced with a single plate beginning in 1911. You can find the difference by looking just below the central image. In the double plate printing, a row of dots appears at the bottom of the central image. This row does not appear in the single plate printing. See the example image blow-ups below for reference.

If you have trouble determining the watermarks on these stamps, try looking at them face down against black paper. The stamps watermarked Multiple Crown CA will have sans serif letters with a crown that is narrow and straight edged. The Multiple Script CA watermark has cursive letters and a crown that is more rounded. See the images of the two watermarks below for reference. They are shown as normally seen from the back. You should be aware that these stamps exist with watermark reversed and inverted, so if you see something different than shown below it is one of these options.

You probably need a few copies of the stamps to accurately sort the surface and paper colors. I typically compare them against both white and black paper. Look for differences that are not too subtle. There was always variation during this time period, but typically the color changes result from mixing new ink for a second printing. They did not have computer color analysis during this time period, so things are just not exact.

The catalog numbers are from the 1980 Commonwealth Five Reigns Catalogue (CW), 2013 Stanley Gibbons Stamp Catalogue (SG) and the 2011 Scott catalog (ST). The description and historical information are from the Commonwealth Catalogue. Please contact Bridger & Kay to obtain a copy of this publication. The descriptions are from the Commonwealth catalogue, but I have also included the Gibbons descriptions below them since when is disagreement about the color shades between the two catalogues.

The images were saved in a larger size and at a higher resolution so you can more easily see the details used in sorting them. Please be patient if it takes a few minutes for this page to load.

Multiple Crown CA
Multiple Script CA
Double Plate Printing (Type I) - Note the row of dots at the bottom of the center design.
Single Plate Printing (Type II) - Note the lack of the row of dots at the bottom of the center design.
CW E27 - SG 34 - ST 14a
1c Green
Double Plate Printing
CW E38 - SG 35 - ST 14
1c Green
Single Plate Printing
CW E28 - SG 36 - ST 16
2c Grey-Black &
CW E29 - SG 36 - ST 16
2c Black &
CW E30 - SG 37 - ST 18
3c Scarlet
Double Plate Printing
CW E39 - SG 38 - ST 18a
3c Scarlet
Single Plate Printing
CW E40 - SG 39 - ST 20
4c Claret
CW E41 - SG 39 - ST 20
4c Lake-Brown
CW E31 - SG 40 - ST 22
5c Black &
CW E32 - SG 40 - ST 22
5c Black &
Deep Orange
CW E42 - SG 49 - ST 23
5c Orange
CW E33 - SG 41 - ST 25
8c Blue &
CW E43 - SG 50 - ST 26
8c Ultramarine
CW E44 - SG 42 - ST 28
10c Purple
Yellow Paper
CW E44a - SG 42a - ST 28
10c Purple
Pale Yellow Paper
CW E44b - SG 42 - ST 28
10c Purple
Thick Yellow Paper
CW E45 - SG 43a - ST 30
25c Lilac
CW E46 - SG 43 - ST 30
25c Deep Lilac
CW E34 - SG 44 - ST 32
30c Purple &
CW E47 - SG 45 - ST 34
50c Black
Green Paper
CW E47a - SG 45a - ST 35
50c Black
Blue-Green Paper
CW E35 - SG 46 - ST 37
$1 Black &
Blue Paper
CW E36 - SG 47 - ST 38
$5 Carmine
Green Paper
CW E37 - SG 48 - ST 39
$25 Black
Red Paper

This article was written to help you identify your stamps.
Please feel free to ask a question, or include a correction.

Comments or Questions feel free to write
Classic Brunei Stamps for sale based on the identification from this article.
Index to KGVI Stamp Description Web Sites
Links to other British Colonial Stamp Sites